TMS History

A group of local citizens established the Texarkana Historical Society in 1966.  In an effort to preserve Texarkana’s unique history, the group began collecting  archival materials. In 1971, the Society opened the Texarkana Historical Museum, now the Museum of Regional History. The new Museum was opened in the historic Offenhauser Insurance building, the oldest surviving brick building in Texarkana.

The collections expanded to include regional and Caddo artifacts and information. The Museum of Regional History includes a vast collection of research materials and photographs available to the public by appointment.

In 1985, the Society obtained the Draughon-Moore “Ace of Clubs” House, which is a unique octagonal house built in 1885.  The house was restored and opened for public tours in 1987.

In 1990, Discovery Place Children’s Museum opened in the old Bryce’s Cafeteria building.  Discovery Place is a hands-on museum of science, history, and human perception.  It also houses traveling exhibits, a fifty-seat video theater, and a classroom.

2010 saw the addition of a fourth property to the TMS collection, its first on the Arkansas side. The historic Patrick J. Ahern home in the heart of the Quality Hill Historic District was donated by the family and is currently undergoing restoration.

To reflect its expanded mission, the Society changed its name to the Texarkana Museums System in 1993.  The organization received accreditation from the American Association of Museums in 1991.


Mission Statement

The Texarkana Museums System (TMS) is a-not-for-profit 501(c)3 educational organization that offers high-quality learning experiences focusing on history, science, art, and music.

TMS is committed to the collection and conservation of materials relating to the human occupation of the region, to the preservation of the buildings it holds in trust for the people
of the Four States Area, and to the enhancement of cultural opportunities and quality of life for all its residents. TMS is committed to maintaining professional and ethical excellence
in all its operations and adheres to the standards set forth by the American Association of Museums.